tv U.S. House of Representatives CSPAN February 4, 2010 1:00pm-5:00pm EST
the unfinished business is the vote on ordering the previous question on house resolution 1065 on which the yeas and nays are ordered. the clerk will report the title of the resolution. the clerk: house calendar number 158, house resolution 1065, resolution providing for consideration of the senate amendment to the joint resolution house joint resolution 45, increasing the statutory limit on the public debt. the speaker pro tempore: the question is on ordering the previous question. members will record their votes by electronic device. by electronic device. 195.
the nays are 212. the resolution is adopted. without objection, a motion to reconsider is laid on the table. the unfinished business is the vote on the motion of the gentleman from tennessee, mr. tanner, to suspend the rules and pass h.r. 4532 on which the yeas and nays are ordered. the clerk will report the title of the bill. the clerk: h.r. 4532, a bill to
provide for permanent extension of the attorney fee withholding procedures under title ii of the social security act to title xvi of such act, and to provide for permanent extension of such procedures under titles 2 and 16 of such act to qualified nonattorney representatives. the speaker pro tempore: the question is will the house suspend the rules and pass the bill. members will record their votes by electronic device. this is a five-minute vote.@@aph
objection the motion to reconsider is laid upon the table. for what purpose does the gentleman from maryland rise? mr. hoyer: madam speaker, pursuant to house resolution 1065 i call up house joint resolution 45 with the senate amendment thereto, and i have a motion at the desk. the speaker pro tempore: the clerk will report the title of the joint resolution. the clerk: designate the senate amendment and report the motion. the clerk: house joint resolution 45, joint resolution increasing the statutory limit on the public debt. senate amendment, mr. hoyer of maryland moves that the house concur in the senate amendment to the house joint resolution 45. the speaker pro tempore: pursuant to house resolution 1065, the motion shall be debatable for one hour equally divided and controlled by the majority leader and the
minority leader or their disegg knees. the gentleman from maryland, mr. hoyer, will control 30 minutes. the gentleman from michigan, mr. camp, will control 15 minutes. and the gentleman from wisconsin, mr. ryan, will control 15 minutes. the chair recognizes the gentleman from maryland. mr. hoyer: i thank the speaker. i yield myself one minute. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman virginia tech. mr. hoyer: ladies and gentlemen of the house, as we have on numerous occasions we just raised the liability -- or the raised the liability -- or the ability to bú
the -- those obligations, of course, come from actions america's already taken. those actions cannot be changed. so was necessary to pay the bill. but we can and must confront our record debt going forward. we must set a responsible path fiscally for our country. a "new york times" analysis found that 90% -- the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman's time has expired. mr. hoyer: i yield myself three additional minutes. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. hoyer: a "new york times"
analysis found that 90% of our deficit was due to the policies of the previous administration. the extension of those policies and the economic downturn. however we believe america got into this mess, this congress can begin getting america out of it. that is why congress must pass one of the most proven deficit cutting rules that we know, statutory pay-as-you-go legislation, or as affectionately known, pay-go. now, let me point to the chart to my right, your left. the deficits are when we did not have statutory pay-go in effect. now, when statutory pay-go was put into effect in 1990 we still had deficits, but you can see that we started reducing those deficits almost on a straight line.
and then in 1997 we went into surplus, fiscal year 1998. and we went into surplus for the next four years under pay-go. unfortunately you will see that in 2001 it was decided that we would waive pay-go, and then in 2003 it was decided by the then majority party that we would eliminate statutory pay-go. and you can see the result. we were turned to deep deficits. so what we are voting on on the floor has demonstrablely made a difference, has demonstrably made america discipline its finances and bring surpluses. as i said, when george bush took office from president clinton, he -- his administration, based upon the past record of the clinton
administration said we had a $5.6 trillion surplus. unfortunately, for the country when president bush left office, we had an almost $8 trillion deficit confronting us. pay-go compels congress to find savings for the money it spends so it keeps our deficit from increasing. under pay-go we'll be required to find savings to balance any new tax cuts or entitlement spending which makes this law essential, essential to the wise prioritization that responsible budgeting demands and indeed there are -- that our fellow citizens expect. as one group put it, and i quote, pay-go requires anyone proposing tax cuts or entitlement expansions to answer the question, how do you pay for it? going through this process will force us an explicit tradeoff between spending, taxes and
debt which is exactly the priority setting exercise that the budget process should and must facilitate. we all know that such deliberate priority setting steps stops us from passing our bills onto our children. under president clinton, pay-go helped turn -- i yield myself two additional minutes. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. hoyer: under president clinton, pay-go helped turn record deficits into a $5.6 million -- billion projected surplus. we also know that pay-go was disregarded, waived and finally allowed to expire under the administration. -- last administration. and as i pointed out on this chart, our deficits exploded. and indeed our economy was hurt as well. as though deficits exposed. some argue that the pay-go legislation on the floor today is too weak, but i point out that it brings our country more fiscal discipline that it has
seen in nearly a decade. the perfect ought not to be the enemy of the good. pay-go can't get us out of our fiscal hole but it can keep us from digging it deeper. when my republican colleagues raised their concerns about our growing debt, i absolutely agree with them. they're right. all of us understand that debt is not sustainable. but it's not enough to complain about the debt. we have to do something about it. it is my -- if my colleagues are sincere in their concerns, i hope they'll work with us to pass pay-go and continue to the bipartisan fiscal commission announced by president obama. i hope you'll participate in that commission helping us get our country to fiscal balance. america's dangerous fiscal condition threatens our prosperity and our place in the world. if my colleagues will -- if my
colleagues will forgive a democrat for paraphrasing ronald reagan, there are no easy answers to this mess but there is a simple answer. the answer lies in recommitting ourselves to the principle that has served our prosperity so well in the past, the principle of responsibility. ronald reagan was right. let us pass this legislation. in closing, let me say, madam speaker, that so many people is responsible for this day, the blue dogs, i want to congratulate them. in a minute i'm going to yield to alan boyd who has led this effort on behalf of the blue dogs for such a long and successful time. i also want -- 30 additional seconds. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. hoyer: an extraordinary individual who works for individuals not only on this
floor, charlie stenholm, who worked on this legislation. he was assisted, as i am now assisted, as all of the house is assisted by an extraordinary member of this staff, ed lorenzen. i want to thank you for the extraordinary efforts you've made to get us to this day. madam speaker, i reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman reserves. the gentleman from michigan is recognized. >> i yield myself such time as i may consume. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. if the gentleman will suspend. mr. hoyer: i thank the gentleman. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from michigan is recognized. mr. camp: if this pay-go legislation fails there is no increase in the debt limit and you cannot separate the two concepts. if this legislation passes, the debt limit increases by an
astounding $1.9 trillion, the largest one-time increase in the debt limit ever. since the majority came into control of congress three years ago, the debt limit has been increased by over $5.3 trillion or by nearly 60%. despite this massive heap of debt thrust onto the american people, democrats plan to pile on more debt next year. according to the president's newest budget proposal, the amount of debt subject to the limit will increase by nearly $1.4 trillion from fiscal year 2010 to fiscal year 2011. a number that large is hard to put into perspective. let me offer a few points of reference. the president plans to increase the debt in just one year the amount equal to the entire g.d.p. of canada. this one-year increase in the debt is larger than the g.d.p. of india, mexico, australia or south korea. it is larger than the g.d.p. of
ireland, poland and belgium combined. we have heard a lot of talk recently from the president about the need to get america's fiscal house in order. however rg according to the president's own budget congress will have to raise the debt limit again before 2010 is over. even more disturbing is the fact under the president's proposed budget, debt subject to this limit will exceed the size of the entire u.s. economy by 2013 and remain more than u.s. g.d.p. to the next decade and presumably for years to come. experts on both sides of the political spectrum agree that this kind of runaway debt threatens the very foundation of america's economy. yesterday, the market provided a stark warning as credit rating agency, moody's, stated the u.s. government's a.a.a. bond rating is blamed for deficits driving up this debt. i hear a lot from the president from my -- president, from my colleagues about the debt.
let's be clear. according to the president's own budget, the largest deficit in u.s. history will be under a democrat administration and a democrat majority in congress. a democrat president and a democrat congress plan a one-year increase in the debt larger than the size of major economies around the world. this isn't about what anyone inherited. it's about what this president and the democrats in congress plan for america. too much spending, too much taxing and too much debt. my friends on the other side are fond of the analogy that raising the debt limit is necessary the same way someone eating in a restaurant must pay. democrats decided to go on an eating binge. it's simply irresponsible for democrats to spend the america people's money in this fashion. rather than letting this massive debt increase pass, i urge congress to examine its out-of-control spending habit this year rather than after the election, as the president
suggests with his so-called deficit commission. i urge this house to restore responsible spending, vote no on the largest one-time increase in the debt limit, and i reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from michigan reserves. the gentleman from florida is recognized. mr. boyd: thank you, madam speaker. i yield myself one minute. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. boyd: madam speaker, i rise in favor of this pay-go legislation. this has been part of this for many, many years. i'm proud to stand here today where we are on the brink of final passage of this important legislation. madam speaker, pay-go was the very first bill that president obama set to congress last year and the progress we have made in the last year would not be possible without his support, and i want to -- i want to thank the president for weighing in and supporting fiscal responsibility. i want to take a moment to thank the leaders of the house who have been so important, particularly speaker nancy pelosi who has a commitment to
fiscal responsibility, majority leader steny hoyer you've already heard from and also chairman of the budget committee, the gentleman from south carolina, john spratt. my blue dog colleagues and i will continue to advocate for tools to bring our fiscal house in order because this is only the very first step. it is a small step and will not solve all of our problems that have been created over the last decade. but we will continue to advocate for tools that will pave the way for long-term economic stability. i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman reserves the balance of his time. the gentleman from michigan is recognized. mr. camp: at this time yield 1 1/2 minutes to the gentleman from texas, the distinguished member of the ways and means committee. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from texas is recognized for 1 1/2 minutes. >> thank you, madam speaker. these congressional democrats just aren't listening. after massachusetts voters sent a signal on behalf of this country that no more spending, we are too deep in debt, here we
go again. and when they sent the signal that governments should be open and people ought to have a say today, they snuck into this bill an increase in the debt limit to make sure there wouldn't be an embarrassing up or down vote on bill the way the public demands it to be. when they were in charge it was a different story. as the majority leader, highly respected, mr. steny hoyer said, democrats, raising the debt limit is immoral. this policy of borrow and spend is not only irresponsible, it's immoral and must stop. he was exactly right. when our speaker, again highly respected speaker, took that gavel three years ago, the debt limit in america was $29,000 for every man, woman and child. today, just three years later, it's $45,000 for each one of you and it's going up and up and up each year. and i will tell you when they say none of the republicans and democrats share the blame,
democrats have incurred twice as much of that debt to date and it's going to skyrocket under their control. and what's even more frustrating is with the new president's budget, that deficit's going to triple over future years. i'll finish with this. pay-go, pay-go is the fiscal responsibility what ethics is to the former governor of illinois. mr. blagojevich. pay-go, since it's been put in place three years ago, our deficits have increased ten fold. i urge defeat of this bill. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from michigan reserves. the gentleman from florida is recognized. >> madam speaker, it is my pleasure and privilege to yield 2 1/2 minutes to the budget committee chairman, the gentleman from south carolina, mr. spratt. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from south carolina is recognized. mr. spratt: madam speaker, to supplement my remarks about pay-go i'd like to include in
the record the section by section description of the bill. the speaker pro tempore: without objection, so ordered. mr. spratt: madam speaker, at the outset of the 1990's the congress passed the budget enforcement act for a simp purpose, to make sure the agreement we passed was carried out. among the provisions was a new rule called pay-go, pay as you go. i can remember how our critics disdained to spend according to budget process instead of making hard substantive decisions that would dodge the hard choices we had to make if we were going to wipe out the deficit. by the end of the 1990's the budget was in surplus for the first time in 30 years and it was clear that the budget process would be put in place like pay gd, it played a big part in our fiscal success. republicans were in the majority in 2002 when the budget enforcement act expired and they chose not to reinstate pay-go
because they knew it would impede passage of their tax cutting agenda. the budget plunged, as a matter of record, from the surplus of $236 billion to a deficit of $413 billion in the year 2004. when democrats took back the house, we made pay-go a rule of the house but first -- the first day we convened in the 110th congress. the current congress has inherited an economy in crisis and a deficit swollen by recession and recovery measures both. as these pull us out of recession we should turn our attention to the longer phase of our country. statutory pay-go works, it iranians in new entitlement spending, it are eins in entitlement spending as well. hard to repeal. by insisting on deficit neutrality, pay-go buffers the bottom line and lord knows it
needs now. this is a commonsense rule. when you find yourself in a hole, quit digging. statutory pay-go was first put in place with bipartisan support in 1997. the house passed it in july, the rule pay-go -- several two dozen republicans joined 220 democrats in voting for it. we invite you to cast another measure, cast another bill for statutory fiscal responsibility. vote for statutory pay-go. it will put more rigor in the budget process, it will help the budget deficit both short term and long term. while it can't solve all our problems, it's no panacea. it the first thing to get us back on the path of fiscal responsibility. i yield. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from michigan is recognized. mr. camp: at this time, madam
speaker, i yield 1 1/2 minutes to the gentlewoman from florida, a distinguished member of the ways and means committee. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlewoman from florida is recognized for 1 1/2 minutes. ms. brown-waite: as yogi berra said, once again it's deja vu all over again. the democrats marched us down here to the house floor to raise the debt ceiling by over a quarter of a trillion dollars. but that wasn't enough. here we are again, 90 days later, this time for a whooping $1.9 trillion debt limit increase. for the uninitiated, a century ago congress very wisely instituted the statutory cap on the amount that the federal government could borrow. unfortunately, congress being congress this body raised that cap dozens of times during the 20th century and has apparently carried that tradition into this new decade with spectacular fashion. as my colleagues on the other
side of the aisle are no doubt clammering over themselves to point out, both parties have done it. in times of war, in times of crisis, and more recently, this democrat majority has made spending more of a priority than saving. in short, madam speaker, excuses don't make it right. i wanted to mention pay-go. i actually voted for pay-go. i was one of 18 republicans who when the democrats took over i voted for pay-go. unfortunately, this democrat leadership has waived it so often it has become so ineffective. they waive it more than they implement it. so i ask my colleagues, don't be misled by so-called pay-go language because it simply isn't real. with that i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlelady's time has expired. the gentleman from florida is recognized. mr. boyd: madam speaker, i yield 1 1/2 minutes to the gentleman from maryland, mr. van hollen.
the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from maryland is recognized. mr. van hollen: thank you, madam speaker. i thank my colleague. we're all entitled to our own opinions but not our own facts. it's a fact that the day that president obama put his hand on the bible to be sworn in as president of the united states, he inherited a $1.3 trillion deficit, a record deficit in this country. this is an opportunity for all of us to stop just talking about the deficit and debts and actually do something about it. for the first time since 2002, congress will bring as a matter of law the commonsense proposition that the federal government should pay for what it buys. and the history of success on this is clear. when this body, when the congress lived under the pay-go rules in the 1990's, we did turn deficits into record surpluses. after pay-go was abandoned, deficits skyrocketed, our national debt clearly doubled. much has been made by the other side of the aisle about the deficit in the first year of
the obama administration, the congressional budget office is pretty clear that the contributors to that were two wars unpaid for, a record mandatory prescription drug bill unpaid for and, of course, two tax cuts that disproportionately benefited the wealthiest americans, all on our national credit card, all running us deeper into the red. this legislation says enough is enough. and it says that virtually any new policy that reduces revenue or increases mandatory spending will have to be offset elsewhere in the budget. that's just common sense to every american family, and it says that for some reason we don't abide by that discipline, you are going to have an across-the-board mechanism -- the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman's time has expired. mr. van hollen: it's time to do what every american has to do and pay as we go. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman's time has expired. the gentleman from michigan is recognized. mr. camp: madam speaker, i yield to the gentleman from north carolina for purposes of
unanimous consent request. >> i thank the gentleman from michigan. i say, madam speaker, i yield -- unanimous consent to revise and extend and yield in opposition to this reckless spending proposal. the speaker pro tempore: without objection, so ordered. .nj 36 c13 of uncertain economic conditions, a focus on fiscal responsibility is critical. real fiscal responsibility not words like commonsense but applying it in a real policy. for months president obama and the majority have talked about the importance of this responsibility. responsibility by crippling federal spending and saying we are going to have a freeze. the president has suggested a spending freeze and we heard a lot about bending the cost curve with health care reform. madam speaker, i think we all know that actions speak louder than words. the fine print in this so-called pay-go bill is a $2
trillion increase in the national debt. let's just read the bill and you see the truth. very different from the rhetoric we hear. instead of being true to their word, the majority has increased spending by an unprecedented 66% over the past year and pushed the deficit to $1.4 trillion in 2009 and 800% increase over the last administration. instead of listening to the american people's pleas, the congress has focused on the economy and jobs, they spent the last year pushing an unpopular, and widely expensive government takeover of health care. instead of taking action on steps that would hold unsustainable action on washington. by 1.9 trillion. the largest one-time increase in the debt for the history of the united states of america. madam speaker, the american people are tired of tightening their budgets and counting pennies while the federal government continues along a path of irresponsible spending. and stagert debt. washington has a 13e7bding problem. it's time to end it and these days it seems more like an
addiction. instead of more broken promises to cut wasteful spending and reduce the deficit, it's past time for president obama and democratic leaders to respond to the demands of the american people and end this tyranny of run away spending in washington. with that i yield back. >> i yield myself 30 second. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. >> you hear a lot about when the debt was incurred. i think it's important we understand the policies put in place that caused that debt to be incurred started in 2001 with the economic package. subsequently we had the war and then we had a recession. all that came from 2001 to 2007. and that was when the policies under the previous administration and previous ok. i want the members to keep that in mind. madam speaker, i ask unanimous
consent that all members may have five legislative days to revise and extend their remarks and include extraneous material on this motion. the speaker pro tempore: without objection, so ordered. mr. boyd: madam speaker, i would like to yield one minute now to the gentleman from new york, mr. bishop. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from new york is recognized. mr. bishop: thank you, madam speaker. i thank mr. boyd for yielding. let me start by commending our leadership for calling this legislation to the floor to restore the same budget enforcement rules that led to the record budget surpluses that we enjoyed in the 1990's. while i commend the senate for finally approving pay-go following our lead in passing it at the beginning of the last congress, i am deeply disappointed that the senate could not summon the support to add the national deficit reduction commission to this bill. the fact that several senate republicans who co-sponsored the deficit commission including the minority leader voted against their own legislation illustrates the deficit of trust mentioned by the president in his state of the union and is yet another example of the corrosive forces that fuel growing public
cynicism about our political process. following the senate inaction on this issue, i applaud the president's intent to issue by executive order a bipartisan -- a commission to attack the bipartisan deficit and i am encouraged by reports that the speaker of the house and the senate majority leader will call the commission's recommendations to a vote. madam speaker, only strong leadership will compel us to overcome the challenges we face. i urge my colleagues to support this legislation. i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman's time has expired. the gentleman from michigan is recognized. mr. camp: thank you, madam speaker, at this time i yield a minute and a half to the gentleman from illinois, a distinguished member of the ways and means committee. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from illinois is recognized for 1 1/2 minutes. >> thank you, madam speaker. i thank the gentleman. the content of this debate is really like a bad movie in a lot of ways. you rewind the tape and we ultimately had this conversation about a year ago when the democrat majority, madam speaker, said to the
american public, look, we want to borrow $1 trillion and with that $1 trillion trust us, it's going to be great. jobs are going to be created. the sun is going to come out. the tulips are going to be there and it's going to be fabulous. didn't work out that way. 11% unemployment in the state of illinois. the difference between the promise of the borrowing, 8% unemployment, has now eclipsed to 11% in illinois. in my home state, madam speaker, that means 200,000 people have taken on debt and haven't been rescued. they weren't rescued in december when the majority said we are going to raise the debt limit again and they are not going to be rescued by this. this is a classic underperformance. the majority with all due respect hasn't recognized the failure of the stimulus. in fact they don't even like to use the word stimulus, madam speaker. so in this context i say let's stop this madness. let's get back to our first priority, our first priorities
are to be a nation of disciplined spenders. and we ought not to empower folks to borrow and create more and more debt into the future. i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from florida is recognized. mr. boyd: madam speaker, i yield one minute to the gentleman from vermont, mr. welch, who is also a co-sponsor of the original pay-go legislation. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from vermont is recognized. mr. welch: thank you very much. two points, number one my question is, what is the other side afraid of? there are certain carketures they want tax cuts. we want spending. the bottom line is whenever your intention, no matter how good and noble you think it is, you have to pay for it. two wars, two tax cuts, $2.3 trillion in deficit that we inherited. and a $750 billion bailout of wall street requested by president george w. bush and
henry paulson. those have to be paid for. the stimulus that's being ridiculed is the overwhelm that a conservative and liberal economist have acknowledged, have diminished the decline in the economy. good intentions are not a substitute for fiscal responsibility. we are acknowledging that. we have different goals. we have to fight those out. but why not? despite whether your goal is the tax cut or spnding program, wouldn't you agree to pay for it? that's what this legislation is about. i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from florida reserves. the gentleman from michigan is recognized. mr. camp: at this time i yield one minute to the distinguished gentleman from new jersey. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. >> thank you very much. madam speaker, i rise today in strong opposition to this bill. $2 trillion increase of our debt limit to more than $14 trillion. over the past three years and in the last three years, the democratic party that has controlled both houses of congress, we have seen the debt limit increased dramatically.
six times totaling $5.3 trillion. an increase of 60% in only three years. in fiscal year twetch, the federal government spent approximately 2.7 trillion. in 2009, $3.5 trillion, and last week we were sent a new budget proposal by the president that would even break that record. we must take concrete action to get spending under control and get our economy moving again. i fear that in unless we take such action, the government's bond rating will be reduced, an event that could have catastrophic results for our markets. i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from florida is recognized. mr. boyd: madam speaker, it's my privilege to yield one minute to the gentleman from indiana, a real leader on this issue for years, all these years in congress, mr. hill. the speaker pro tempore: the chair recognizes the gentleman from indiana. mr. hill: i thank my friend for yielding the time. madam speaker, i rise in strong support of this legislation. this is legislation that we
blue dogs have been fighting for many, many years. and it's very satisfying that it's coming to fruition today. i'm not here to play the blame game. there is a lot of blame to go around about our nation's budget deficit. what we need is an instrument that gets us back on the pathway of fiscal responsibility. we know that pay-go works. it worked in the 1990's. and i should also say that it was a republican president who proposed it. president bush senior was the one that thought this was a good idea. president clinton thought it was a good idea. and resulted in budget surpluses. we have problems with our nation's budget deficit. there is no question about that. that this is the instrument that gets us back on track to fiscal responsibility. and so i join my colleagues on this side of the aisle and would hope a few others on that side of the aisle that would get us back on that path. this is the right thing to do. after many years it's finally a reality. i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from michigan is recognized.
mr. camp: at this time, madam speaker, i yield four minutes to the distinguished gentleman from indiana. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from indiana is recognized for four minutes. mr. pence: thank you, madam speaker, i ask unanimous consent to revise and extend my remarks. the speaker pro tempore: without objection, so ordered. mr. pence: time for a little bit of truth telling. the truth telling about our side is that back when we were in charge we didn't do so well on controlling run away federal spending. my colleagues who know we well know that i was many times found myself across -- at cross-purposes in fighting the president of my own party and some leadership in my own party on some of those big spending fights. but under the last administration we doubled the national debt. i want to stimulate to that. but frankly that's no excuse for what's happening today, madam speaker. over the last three years the democrat majority has literally broken the ceiling on fiscal responsibility and as i just
admitted that ceiling was pretty high. since democrats took control of congress in january, 2007, the national debt has increased by $3.96 trillion, a 42% increase in three years. to keep up with this spending binge, congress has increased the debt limit five times over the last three years. three times since the current administration took office one year ago. and the statutory debt increase that comes before us today, $1.9 trillion, is the largest one-time debt increase in u.s. history. this is the fifth increase as i mentioned in the last 19 months. this one-time increase in the debt limit of $1.9 trillion is actually larger than the entire g.d.p. of almost every country in the world. it's larger than the g.d.p. of canada, russia, spain, or brazil. and it's larger than the g.d.p. of australia and poe lapd combined. -- poland combined.
the american people are looking at this extraordinary gusher of spending and debt and they are asking the question, when will it stop? and the answer is, we look at the budget that the administration submitted4y9 earlier this week, is no time soon. 'mxáa7eq=mox9[[2mqno carrier and let me say with respect to the american people that we by the promises of fiscal discipline known as pay-go. the truth is the bill before us today is about 50 pages long and 32 of those pages are all the programs that are exempted from the pay-go requirements. 40% of federal spend something exempted from the fiscal
discipline fix that we have been told is encompassed in pay-go. the truth is pay-go really means here in washington is you pay and they go on spending. the fact is what we see here is is a failure of leadership. president obama, as a united states senator, said in march of 2006, when he came out against raising the debt limit in a vote, and i quote, the fact that we are here today to debate raising america's debt limit is a sign of leadership failure. it is a sign that the u.s. government can't pay its own bills, it is a sign that we now depend onion going financial assistance from foreign countries to finance our government's recklessness. america has a debt problem and a failure of leadership, closed quote. so said then senator barack obama, march, 2006. . .
the american people long for us to face true fiscal discipline and reform. they long for this administration and this congress to lead us away from the brink of fiscal disaster. this pay-go, this debt ceiling vote is no solution. and i urge its opposition. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from michigan reserves. the gentleman from florida is recognized. mr. boyd: thank you, madam speaker. i yield myself one minute. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. boyd: madam speaker, pay-go when it was put in place in the past in the 1990's was put in place with bipartisan votes. it is my hope that the gentleman from indiana will work with us in a bipartisan way. the first thing we must do is understand exactly what pay-go does. he said for example that pay-go has a list of exemptions which wouldn't affect current spending programs. pay-go has nothing to do with current spending. it speaks to additional and new entitlement mandatory spending programs.
and/or tax reductions. changes in law. so the first thing we should do, madam speaker, is get a good understanding of about exactly what pay-go does do. stop digging the hole. then we can begin to fill in the hole. and reach fiscal responsibility, reach balanced budget like we did back in the 1990's. madam speaker, with that i yield one minute to the gentleman from illinois, mr. quigley. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from illinois is recognized. mr. quigley: thank you. thank you, madam speaker. every day families across the country make sacrifices to stay within their household budget. you can't spend what you haven't saved. for the past decade congress has failed to grasp that simple premise. that failure has led to what the president aptly described as a deficit of trust. it's hard to govern when you don't have the public trust, and it's hard to borrow when you lost the trust of world markets. during the 1990's, pay-go
forced members to make hard decisions. our pay-go rules were weighed in 2001 on the theory we could -- waived in 2001 on the theory we can pay for two wars and tax cuts. today we are taking the first step to win back the public trust. madam speaker, today i am a blue dog. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from michigan is recognized. mr. camp: madam speaker, i yield the balance of my time to mr. ryan to control. the speaker pro tempore: without objection. mr. ryan: madam speaker, may i inquire how much time that was? the speaker pro tempore: 30 seconds remaining. so you have 15 minutes and 30 seconds to control. the gentleman from wisconsin. mr. ryan: does the gentleman want to go next?
madam speaker, i yield myself three minutes at this time. it's nice to see a friendly wisconsin in the chair. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from wisconsin is recognized for three minutes. mr. rye kwan: madam speaker, the -- mr. ryan: madam speaker, the vote we are having here today is not a vote for pay-go, whatever we want to call it, it's a vote to raise the debt ceiling by $1.9 trillion. so the majority might argue this about the debt, but let's not be fooled. this is about a debt ceiling. treasury has to raise it because we have had this incredible spending spree and we are on an unsustainable trajectory of more debt. now, let's take a look at where we are right now. right now the burden of the debt on our economy is 60%. that's worse than what is required in europe because under this budget that's passing, it goes up to 77% of our economy by the end of the president's budget. now, already foreigners hold about half of our debt in china lends us the most.
the problem we have, madam speaker, is that chinese aren't going to keep lending us all their money. let me tell you a little bit about what will happen to america. the debt trajectory we are on will weaken america. the debt goes to catastrophic levels in this country which will destroy our economy, that's a tough word, and for sure give the next generation an inferior standard of living. these are facts. they are not opinions. now, one thing that i find interesting about pay-go is the budget that we are living under right now doubles and triples our debt in 10 years and it's all pay-go client. the -- compliant. the debt skyrockets under the current budget and does so within pay-go. if you look at the president's budget, it says with this pay-go rule not only will the budget, the debt, triple in 10 years, but we'll have another $473 billion under pay-go to spend on top of that. that's what pay-go does, madam
speaker. pay-go has been in place before. we have seen it. it started in 2007 when the democrats took over congress. at that time when pay-go was put in place we had $$161 billion deficit. we have a $1.6 trillion deficit now. 40% of the entire budget is exempt from pay-go. it does not do us a thing at all to reduce the deficit. in fact, what pay-go does is it locks in the deficit at its current levels. it doesn't address spending crisis. . not only entitlements are growing themselves into bankruptcy, not only are we looking at bankruptcy of medicare, social security and medicaid right around the corner, pay-go is ripe with loopholes. it exempts 40% of spending, as i mention. it exempts mandatory spending in appropriation bills. it exempts all spending designed as emergencies and more than 160 programs are exempt from its enforcement.
the point is this, madam speaker, my greatest concern is if we pass this illusion of fiscal control, that will replace any real fiscal spending control whatsoever. it's good talk. it sounds good. when you look at the details it accomplishes nothing. and when it's ever applied it's only to chase higher spending and higher taxes. i reject this and i reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman reserves the balance of his time. the gentleman from florida is recognized. mr. boyd: it's my privilege to yield one minute to the gentleman from new jersey, mr. andrews. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from new jersey is recognized. mr. andrews: i ask unanimous consent to revise and extend my remarks. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. andrews: the american people must be baffled about the charges and countercharges going back and forth. i ask those listening to make their decision based on two facts. the gentleman from kentucky said a few minutes ago that the present administration tripled federal spending. i invite people to go look at
the record that says the 2008 budget was $2.9 trillion. the proposed budget for this one is $3.1 trillion. it's not tripling. we've accumulated 30% of the debt. in the years we have not had it we've accumulated 70% of the federal debt. choose based upon the record, and i think people voting yes on this commonsense legislation is the right path. i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from florida reserves the balance of his time. the gentleman from wisconsin is recognized. mr. ryan: -- the speaker pro tempore: who seeks to yield time? mr. boyd: how much time does each side have? the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from florida has 12 minutes and the gentleman from wisconsin controls 12 1/2 minutes. mr. boyd: i continue to reserve my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from florida reserves. who seeks to yield time?
the gentleman from wisconsin is recognized. mr. ryan: at this time i yield two minutes to the gentlelady from wyoming, a distinguished member of the budget committee, mrs. lummis. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlewoman from wyoming is recognized. lum lum two -- mrs. lummis: two points i'd like to make. this is not the same statutory pay-as-you-go that was in effect in the 1990's. when president clinton was working with a republican congress, they did balance the budget, and they did create a surplus but they used a statutory pay-as-you-go mechanism, or perhaps it was a nonstatutory pay-as-you-go mechanism that actually didn't have as many exemptions as this one does. the fact that we're using a statutory pay-as-you-go terminology that really doesn't limit in any way spending to be
paid for is simply disingenuous. the other point i'd like to make is our debt limit. we don't have to raise the debt limit today, the debt ceiling. what we would have to do is put strict spending caps on ourselves, roll back the budget to fiscal year 2008 levels. we would have to pull in stimulus money, tarp money and other expenditures that have either been returned to the government or not yet made and we wouldn't have to raise this debt ceiling. so this is an issue of lacking fiscal responsibility. we are in a situation of borrow as you go, not pay as you go, madam speaker, and i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from florida is recognized. mr. boyd: madam speaker, i yield myself 15 seconds. i'd like to remind the gentlelady from wyoming that we did borrow as you go since 2001 and we want to do pay as you go
starting now. i'd -- it's my privilege, madam speaker, to yield one minute to the gentleman from -- the gentlelady from pennsylvania, the vice chair of the budget committee, ms. schwartz. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlelady from pennsylvania is recognized. ms. schwartz: thank you very much. today, the house will take a major step in efforts to balance the federal budget. like american families and businesses, congress must be fiscally responsible and pay for what we spend. our focus this year is two-fold. restoring our economy and reducing the deficit. growing jobs and restoring fiscal discipline is not easy or quick. particularly given the financial situation we inherited. in 2002 republicans allowed pay-go to expire and turned budget surpluses into deficits in 2009 of $1.3 trillion. how did this happen? they grew annual spending by over 8%. they passed the largest expansion in entitlements without paying for them.
they started and didn't pay for two wars, and they gave and did not pay for tax cuts to the wealthiest of -- 1% of americans. this added $8 trillion to the national debt. we must agree and we should as democrats and republicans agree to pay for what we spend. it's an important step in putting our nation back on track towards fiscal discipline and responsible budgeting. i'd say vote yes for pay-go legislation. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from wisconsin is recognized. mr. ryan: madam speaker, this time i yield 2 1/2 minutes to the distinguished gentleman from texas, the vice ranking member of the budget committee, mr. hensarling. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from texas is recognized for 2 1/2 minutes. mr. hensarling: thank you, madam speaker. already in just two years an 84% increase in enacted spending, 484%, a spending bill that has -- 84%, a spending bill that has us
mired. another $400 billion omnibus bill. the explosion of spending is unprecedented in our nation's history, and that leads us to the vote that's before us today. increase the debt limit for the third time in 12 months. increase it another $1.9 trillion, our democratic colleagues say, so that we can i crease the burden for household $-- per household $16,214. where will it all end? and now just this week we hear from the president of the united states, we haven't spent enough. let's spend some more. let's propose a budget that will simply triple, triple the national debt over 10 years. madam speaker, the american people are tired of the spending, tired of the debt, tired of the deficits and certainly tired of the bailouts. and don't take my word for it,
madam speaker. let's hear what cnbc had to say about the matter of the president's budget. quote, part of a record $3.8 trillion that would boost the deficit beyond any in the nation's history. "the new york times" -- quote, the deficit is projected to peak at $1.6 trillion. it goes on to say, and remain at economic troublesome levels over the remainder of the decade. "wall street journal," all of this spending must be financed so that deficits and taxes are both scheduled to rise to record levels. and so what do we hear? we hear from our democratic friends, well, let's have pay-go. well, what did we learn about pay-go? number one, they already had a house rule for two years. and at least as practiced in the last fiscal year 98%, madam speaker, 98% of all spending was either waived or it was
exempt. pay-go is a budget fig leaf. well, what has the president suggested? he says, well, let's freeze spending. but what we discovered when we run the numbers is he doesn't turn on the freezer for year. turns it quite soon after that. when you plug in the numbers it's a difference between growing government 49.27% versus 49.01%. they are bankrupting america. reject this vote. reject this debt limit increase. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from florida is recognized. mr. boyd: madam speaker, it's my privilege to yield now two minutes to the gentleman from new york, mr. hinchey. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from new york is recognized. mr. hinchey: thank you, madam chairman. thank you, madam speaker. the elements of this bill are critically important. pay as you go is essential. it is critically essential at this point in the issues dealing with -- we're dealing with by this country. if you look back over the course of the last several
years you've seen how this huge deficit has gone up over and over again. let me just give you a couple of examples of the way in which the huge debt that we have now has increased. under the leadership of the opposition on the other side of the aisle here and the previous president. one of those was the military invasion of iraq which was completely unjustified. there was no justification for it whatsoever. the price of that is approaching now $1 trillion. another issue that was dealt with in the context when they were in the majority was the tax cuts for the wealthiest people in america. those tax cuts have now created the greatest concentration of wealth in the hands of the wealthiest 1% of americans that this country has ever experienced since 1929, 1930. now, we know what brought that about. and we know the same kind of circumstances that we're dealing with now. let me just give another
example. they're not very much in favor of things like health care. take, for example, what they tried to do with medicare back in 2003 and how the price of that has gone up so much. they introduced prescription drug provisions in the medicare program, but they would not allow for the negotiation of it to take place. they would just say that whatever the drug companies want to charge you that's what you're going to have to pay and that price is now going up somewhere in the neighborhood of $700 billion. all of that has created the huge deficit that we have. and if you look at the way in which that has adversely affected our economy, you see it over and over again. in housing, for example, over the course of the last year and a half, the housing situation in this country has been -- gone desperate. all of these things need to be changed. this bill will deal with it constructively and effectively
and it should be passed unanimously. the speaker pro tempore: the time of the gentleman has expired. the chair recognizes the gentleman from wisconsin. mr. ryan: madam speaker, at this time i'd like to yield two minutes to the gentleman from georgia, mr. kingston. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from georgia is recognized for two minutes. mr. kingston: i thank the gentleman for yielding. i say the concept of pay-go sounds great but it's an absolute fig leaf when you look at the practicality of it only applies to 2% of the budget. it's just not a genuine proposal. i want to say this. i think it's good to have this discussion, but both parties have been spending too much money and not just congress but the federal reserve. just think about 2008. bear stearns bailout, $29 billion. a bush stimulus bill in may of 2008, $168 billion. the f.h.a.ie mae bailout -- the fannie mae bailout and the freddie mac bailout.
president bush signed it into law. so both parties have been in this mix. and then comes president obama. $787 billion stimulus bill that brought our unemployment from 8% to 10%. an omnibus spending bill, $410 billion. a health care proposal that costs over $1 trillion. cap and trade that will cost american households $1,500 per house. and another stimulus bill that the democrats under speaker pelosi just passed in december of about $60 billion. ladies and gentlemen, both parties are guilty. but this is the essence of it. it's a tripling of the national debt. therefore, we have a debt ceiling. the debt ceiling is a mechanism, an outside trigger to force democrats and republicans to come together and cut spending. but instead, what do we do? we move the trigger. and the result is this? and guess who inherits it? the children. and gen-x and gen-y and
medicaid who has unobligated debt right now. we are not facing what we need to do. instead of moving the debt ceiling we need to be going back into our spending and cutting spending, not kicking the can down the road for another congress, another election and another generation. vote no on this. let's stay -- the speaker pro tempore: the time of the gentleman has expired. mr. kingston: let's start coming together to fix the budget. thank you. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from florida is recognized. mr. boyd: madam speaker, i yield one minute to the gentleman from north dakota, a fellow blue dog, mr. pomeroy. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from north dakota is recognized. mr. pomeroy: i commend the gentleman so much on budget matters. receiving fiscal lectures from this crowd is a little bit like getting financial advice from bernie madoff. you know, when george bush took the presidency, the debt was
$5.6 trillion. and under house majorities in the house and senate with a republican president, the debt doubled. part of the reason is the expiration of pay-as-you-go budgeting principles. don't take my word for it. the record is clear. when we adhere on a bipartisan basis with the bush i agreement, the budget 1997 agreement and the democrat passed 1993 agreement to pay as you go we set the path toward surplus. when it expired, the deficits exploded. now as we get our handed around this fiscal -- hands around this fiscal situation, my friend, mr. ryan, is in part right when he says that this is not a full measured response. you know, we've got a long journey. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman's time has expired. mr. pomeroy: we have to begin with a solid step. restoring pay as you go budget
principle is that step. i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman's time has expired. the gentleman from wisconsin is recognized. mr. ryan: madam speaker, i yield myself two minutes. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. ryan: madam speaker, we need to step up to the plate. look at what's happening with the current government right now. i have three children, they're 5 years old, 6 years old and my oldest just turned 8. for the last 40 years the size of our government has been remarkably consistent, about 20% of the economy. meaning we've taken 20 cents out of every dollar made in america to go to the federal government. when my three children are my age, the current government we have right now, this is before you would even pass the president's budget, that current government goes to 40% of our economy. you'll have to take 40 cents out of every dollar made in america just to keep the government we have now in place at that time, doubling the taxes on the next
generation. i ask the congressional budget office, what would the income tax rates have to be to support all of this when my kids are my age? the lowest tax bracket, which is now 10%, they said would have to go to 25%. the middle income tax brackets for middle income families go to 66%. top tax bracket on small businesses, 88%. madam speaker, we know we are crashing our economy with this borrow and spend mentality and all of that is pay-go compliant. this is not budget discipline, it's an illusion. let's come together and fix this problem. with that i reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from wisconsin reserves the balance of his time. the gentleman from florida is recognized. mr. boyd: madam speaker, it's my privilege to yield 1 1/2 minutes to the gentleman from tennessee, a great leader on this issue for many, many, many years, leader of the blue dogs, mr. tanner. the speaker pro tempore: the
gentleman from tennessee is recognized. mr. tanner: thank you, madam speaker. you know, if we accept everything that everybody has said on both sides of the aisle is true, that's still not, in my view, a good financial reason to vote against this bill. it may be a good political reason but it's not a good financial reason. yes, this bill is imperfect. but it is a first step. pay-go only applies to those laws that are enacted that either demand by the law itself that federal revenues be offered or that spending be changed. it disease it does not affect discretionary spending and so forth -- it does not affect discretionary spending and so forth. it is a first step. this bill is not perfect but financially whatever your reason is is not a good reason financially speaking to vote against something that's good. perfect, no.
but perfect is always the enemy of the good in the legislative body. and so unless one wants to talk politics, if one wants to talk finances, i cannot think of a good financial reason to say, well, let's just do this if this is all we can do. it is a good first step and it ought to be taken. mr. boyd: i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from wisconsin is recognized. mr. ryan: may i inquire as to how much time remains on each side? the speaker pro tempore: yes. the gentleman from wisconsin controls five minutes and the gentleman from florida controls 6 1/2 minutes. mr. ryan: does the gentleman want to catch up? mr. boyd: thank you. i thank my friend, mr. ryan, and, madam speaker, it is my privilege now to recognize the speaker of the house and yield one minute to the gentlelady from california, ms. pelosi. the speaker pro tempore: the chair recognizes the speaker.
the speaker: thank you very much, madam speaker. i thank the gentleman for yielding and i thank him for his extraordinary leadership on this important issue. an issue of importance to our country, to our economic stability, to our fiscal soundness and to our children and our grandchildren. and this is an issue, pay as you go, who could oppose this great idea? it has a prominence in the democratic party that goes back over 30 years. but it has been in practice in a bipartisan way over time. to my progressive friends i say that, to congressman george miller of california, introduced a resolution in 1982, democratic congress invention, midterm convention in philadelphia, calling for pay as you go. it was passed and adopted as part of the democratic platform. a measure for fiscal soundness, recognizing that even those of us who see a role in government,
a limited role in government and investments in our children's future, know that it must be paid for or else we are heaping debt onto our children. that was in 1982, it wasn't until later, with a republican president, president bush, and a democratic congress that pay-go was implemented. then later under a democratic president, president clinton, and a republican congress, pay-go was implemented. and all of those times it brought down the deficit and under the case of president clinton led to a trajectory of $5.6 trillion in surplus. it hit the -- i wouldn't say a bump in the road, i'd say a giant mogul when president bush came in and the republican congress and the republican president abandoned pay-go and now for the past -- the eight years up until 2009, january,
we've had these growing deficits. here we are again sweeping up behind to get rid of the trajectory that we are on of increasing the deficit. so here it is. it's a historic day. i'm so very happy. when i became speaker of the house, the very first day we passed legislation that made pay-go the rule of the house. today we will make it the law of the land. that is because i talked about the progressive of this idea, but because of the extraordinary leadership of the blue dog coalition in the congress. this pay as you go is part of a blue print for fiscal responsibility -- blueprint for fiscal responsibility which has been their man a that and which that he -- monday that and which they have made the mantra of the house of representatives. i commend mr. boyd for his
relentless leadership on this subject, mr. hill, the author of the legislation, jim matheson, the leadership, stephanie herseth sandlin, the leadership of the blue dog coalition, and a person who has been a relentless and articulate person on this issue, john tanner, whom i had the honor of following in this debate. as i said, the blue dog has made this a priority but it's out there also with subjecting spending to the harshest scrutiny. every federal dollar that is spent must be subjected to scrutiny to make sure the taxpayer gets his or her money's worth. subject the spending to scrutiny and that's what president obama is proposing with this his freeze and cuts -- with his freeze and cuts. pay as you go, which largely applies to the entitlement which
are the largest part -- biggest increases in the deficit, and, third, the commission to review the entitlement and how we can control cost. this is an obligation that we have to our children, it is an important part of the work that we do. to be able to make difficult, difficult choices on how we make investments, understanding that they must be paid for. and so the luxury of just heaping bills with projects or whatever or in terms of new indictments, especially in terms of pay-go, -- entitlements, especially in terms of pay gd, that day is over unless it is paid for. so how is it a reflection in our country? how important it is to meeting the needs of the american people, would we put it before something else? that is what this is about. about prioritizing so that we can get on a path of deficit
reduction, reducing the national debt, reducing the debt service, hundreds of billions of dollars of interest on the debt which gets us really nothing, gets us really nothing in return. so the time is long overdue for this to be taken for granted that the federal government will pay as it goes, that we will be on a path of deficit reduction and that every action that we take and any bill that we take will have to meet the test. does this reduce the deficit? does this create jobs? does this grow our economy? does this stabilize our economy? well into the future? central, central to all of that and a very strong pillar of fiscal responsibility is this pay-go legislation that we have here today. i couldn't be more thrilled for what this means about the fundamentals of how we govern, how we choose and how we honor
our responsibility to future generations to reduce the deficit. with all the respect and admiration and gratitude to the blue dog coalition for being so persistent in passing this and my congratulations, if i may, to the senate for passing the bill, it's taken a while but they are there and now after this, then it goes to the president, it will be the law of the land. i think this is cause for celebration. with that i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from florida reserves the balance of his time. the gentleman from wisconsin is recognized. mr. ryan: this time, madam speaker, i'd like to yield three minutes to the distinguished minority whip, mr. cantor. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized for three minutes. mr. cantor: i thank the gentleman from wisconsin, the ranking member, and, madam speaker, it would be recklessly naive to go about our business in washington pretending there won't be severe consequences for
the mountains of debt we're piling up. yet today it's evident that this kind of willful ignorance is sweeping across washington. we're set to lift our nation's debt burden to $14 trillion. madam speaker, i'd ask my colleagues in this chamber if they know how many zeros $14 trillion has? i'd ask the american people if they know how many zeerows are in $14 trillion? -- zeros are in $14 trillion? it's $14 trillion, it is beyond exre he hention to be talking about numbers this bill -- comprehension to be talking about numbers this big. more precisely, the limit is 1,4,2,9,4, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0,
0, 0. it's a travesty. the writing is on the wall. congress needs to wake up and realize that the future of american prosperity is in dire states are, mortal danger -- dire straits, mortal danger. democrats in congress boosted federal spending by 12%. madam speaker, we've heard a lot about the majority's pay-go scheme but this will not affect any spending that has already happened. in fact, it will perpetuate the problem by locking in that spending going forward. and the majority's solution to offset all of their spending is more tax increases which will kill jobs at the time we need them most. supporters of this legislation
will pull the wool over the american people's eyes and claim fiscal responsibility but the american people aren't buying it. by voting in favor of this pay-go bill, the majority will be increasing the debt burden on our children and grandchildren by $1.9 trillion. strip away the sweet-sounding rhetoric and that is what this bill is all about. madam speaker, i just end with this rhetorical question, how effective can this so-called panacea really be when the debt has risen by $5.4 trillion since the majority imposed pay-go in this very house over three years ago? with that i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from florida is recognized.
mr. boyd: madam speaker, it's my privilege to yield one minute to the gentlewoman from pennsylvania, mrs. dahlkemper. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlewoman from pennsylvania is recognized. mrs. dahlkemper: madam speaker, as a member of the blue dog coalition, i'm proud to stand in support of statutory pay-go. pay as you go legislation was a key factor as we've heard in delivering the budget surpluses of the 1990's. the republican controlled congress allowed pay as you go to expire in 2002, contributing to the dramatic turnaround from a projected surplus of $5.6 trillion when president clinton left office to a projected deficit of more than $11 trillion at the end of the last administration. restoring statutory pay-as-you-go will bring our country out of the red and into the black. a journey begins with a first step. i'm proud to take this vote as we return to sensible spending. our path to fiscal spending
starts today. restoring pay-go is the first step in removing the burden of federal debt from the american people. it's my hope that this will be the first of many steps, that both democrats and republicans take, to balance our budget and be good stewards of taxpayers' funds. i want to thank the blue dog leaders. i yield back the remainder of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from wisconsin is recognized. mr. ryan: madam speaker, may i inquire of the gentleman from florida if he has any more speakers? mr. boyd: i have one additional speaker. mr. ryan: i'll wait for that speaker. i believe the gentleman has the right to close. i reserve. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from wisconsin reserves. the gentleman from florida. mr. boyd: madam speaker, it's now my privilege to yield one minute to the gentleman from rhode island, mr. langevin. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from rhode island is recognized. mr. langevin: i ask unanimous consent to revise and extend. the speaker pro tempore: without objection, so ordered. the gentleman from rhode island is recognized. mr. langevin: madam speaker, i rise in support of the statutory pay-go act. this bill, which i'm proud to
co-sponsor, will help restore fiscal discipline by enacting into law the most basic principle of responsible accounting, that every dollar spent must be offset by a dollar earned or saved. this is a way that the american families balance their finances, and the same principles should apply to the federal budget. this legislation is particularly important at a time when congress also faces a troubling task of raising the statutory debt limit. i am truly dismayed by the need to raise the ceiling of our national debt which already exceeds $12 trillion. now, we simply can't keep borrowing our way to a better future. it is time that we take decisive action to reduce our federal deficit while continuing to invest in our economy and combat unemployment. in rhode island the unemployment rate is now at 12.9%, the third highest in the country. put simply, rhode island is -- rhode islanders is keeping jobs. this is going to require the
will of democrats and republicans and independents alike to solve our budgetary problems. the first step is passing the statutory pay-as-you-go act. we need to send a strong message to the american people that the days of fiscal irresponsibility is over. thank you. i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from florida reserves his time. the gentleman from wisconsin is recognized. mr. ryan: madam speaker, i'll yield myself the remainder of the time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized for two minutes. mr. ryan: madam speaker, the speaker of the house came and said something to the fact that this was a proud moment and a bill she is excited about. the bill we're about to vote on, madam speaker, raises the national debt ceiling by $1.9 trillion. even if i were a supporter of this bill i wouldn't be proud of it. i'm taking a look at the president's budget. on page 172, table s-9, the president's pay-go proposal says that the end of the budget window we can spend another $473 billion. so we're saying all the debt
that's going up, the tripling of the national debt that we're giving to our kids and grandkids, not only does that comply with pay-go, we can go ahead and spend another $473 billion on top of it. this, madam speaker, is a fiscal charade. real people from both parties need to step up and solve this problem. i threw out a few ideas of my own. i hope democrats and republicans do the same. because, madam speaker, if we don't tackle this problem it's going to tackle us. our constituents sent us here to be part of a solution and not part of the problem. and we know irrefuteably we're going to bequeath the mountain of deficit and debt onto the next generation. both of our parties share in the blame. no one party corners on fiscal
responsibility, but we need to come down here and fix this once and for all. and doing this doesn't do it. doing this is a copout. doing this raises the debt limit $1.9 trillion and gives us a fiscal copout so that we can go talk in the election about how we did this and that while we bequeathed the next generation and inferior standard of living. i didn't come here to make sure that my three kids are going to have a life that's worse off than ours. nobody here wants that so let's get this fixed, defeat this bill, come together and do real fiscal discipline. the american people are not undertaxed. we overspend. gentleman from florida is the speaker pro tempore: the recognized. mr. boyd: madam speaker, may i inquire as to the time i have left? the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman controls 3 1/2 minutes. boyd boy madam speaker, i yield myself the balance of the -- mr. boyd: madam speaker, i yield myself the balance of the time. the speaker pro tempore:
without objection. mr. boyd: madam speaker, this has been a good debate. i want to work with mr. ryan to solve these problems. madam speaker, that's the only way that we will solve this massive problem that we have. i don't think any of us take pleasure. i know mr. ryan doesn't and i know i don't. in talking about here -- here about raising the debt ceilings. i would be less pleased if i had voted for those policies and i would be embarrassed. and i give you an example. the economic package of 2001 that carried us down this trail. subsequently 9/11, subsequent medicare prescription drug programs, unpaid for. wars that we continued to cut taxes while we were committing our troops overseas and
billions -- hundreds of billions of dollars to prosecute those wars. madam speaker, we have to stop this foolish policy of spending more than we take in. congress is -- has consistently shown that we don't have the will to discipline ourselves when it comes to spending and revenue raising. pay-as-you-go legislation is a tool that will put us back on the right path to fiscal responsibility. it worked in the path, as others have said, put in place first by george w. bush sr. along with a democratic congress and then later on by president clinton with a republican congress. we can do it again if we work in a bipartisan way. this is a great first step, though. and for those who criticize the legislation as having too many exemptions, i'm very pleased to hear mr. ryan and others saying they changed their tune about
exemptions. i have some vote sheets here that says they voted to enact spending programs or mandatory programs that we had paid for but they voted against the bill when it was paid for and then voted for it when it's not paid for. so i assume they have taken a different approach as to how they vote in the future. this bill will not only encourage that but require it statutorily. with that i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back his remaining time. all time for debate has expired. pursuant to house resolution 1065, the previous question is ordered. the question of adoption of the motion has been divided. the first portion of the divided question is on concurring in the matter preceding title 1 of the senate amendment. pursuant to house resolution 1065, the first portion of the divided question stands adopted. the second portion of the divided question is, will the house concur in the matter
comprising titles 1 and 2 of the senate amendment? all those in favor of concurring in the matter comprising titles 1 and 2 of the senate amendment say aye. all those opposed say no. the ayes have it. the second portion of the divided question is adopted. mr. ryan: i ask for the yeas and nays. the speaker pro tempore: the yeas and nays are requested. all those in favor of taking this vote by the yeas and nays will rise. a sufficient number having arisen, the yeas and nays are ordered. members will record their votes by electronic device. pursuant to clause 8 of rule 20, this 15-minute vote on the adoption of the second portion of the divided question will be followed by a five-minute vote on the motion to suspend the rules on house resolution 960. this is a 15-minute vote. [captioning made possible by the national captioning institute, inc., in cooperation with the united states house of representatives. any use of the closed-captioned coverage of the house proceedings for political or commercial purposes is
the speaker pro tempore: the unfinished business is the question on suspending the rules and agreeing to house resolution 960 which the clerk will report by title. the clerk: house resolution 960, resolution expressing support for designation of january, 2010, as national stalking awareness month to raise awareness and encourage prevention of stalking. the speaker pro tempore: the question is will the house suspend the rules and agree to the resolution. so many as are in favor say aye. those opposed say no. in the opinion of the chair, 2/3 having responded in the affirmative, the rules are suspended, the resolution is agreed to and without objection the motion to reconsider is laid on the table. the unfinished business is the question on suspending the
rules and passing s. 2950, which the clerk will report by title. the clerk: senate 2950, an extend -- act to extend the pilot program for volunteer groups to obtain criminal himpt background checks. the speaker pro tempore: the question is on if the house will suspend the rules and pass the bill. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. in the opinion of the chair, 2/3 having responded in the affirmative, the bapped -- the bill is passed and without objection the motion to reconsider is laid on the
the speaker pro tempore: for what purpose does the gentleman from new jersey seek recognition? >> mr. speaker, i ask unanimous consent that when the house adjourns on friday, february 5, it adjourns to meet at 12:30 p.m. on tuesday next for morning hour debate. the speaker pro tempore: without objection, so ordered. mr. andrews: thank you, mr. speaker.
the speaker pro tempore: the house will come to order. all members are asked to please remove your conversations from the house floor. will all members please clear will all members please clear the well? the speaker pro tempore: the chair will entertain requests for one minutes. for what purpose does the gentleman from new mexico rise? >> to revise and extend my remarks. the speaker pro tempore: without objection. will the gentleman -- the gentleman's right. the house is not in order. will all members please remove your conversations from the house floor?
the gentleman from new mexico is recognized. mr. lujan: thank you, madam speaker. last week former secretary of the interior, representative stewart udall, uncle of senator mark udall, secretary udall now resides in my home state of new mexico. stewart udall's legacy is visible throughout our country from his time as interior secretary for president kennedy and johnson. it is visible in the lands he protected and the lands he enacted to the laws that were protected. groundbreaking laws that protected our air, water, animals and their natural habitats. in his tenure, the united states enacted the clean air act, the wilderness act, the endangered species act and others. when he left public office he continued his work, taking up the cause of navajos who suffered from mining.
he protected harm uranium miners and their families. secretary udall led compassion and commonsense -- let compassion and commonsense guide him. he is a great american and new mexican. happy birthday, secretary udall. the speaker pro tempore: for what purpose does the gentleman from georgia rise? mr. gingrey: to address the house for one minute. the speaker pro tempore: without objection. mr. gingrey: on friday, january 29, russia's fifth generation fighter jet with stealth capabilities successfully completed their test flight. it comes on the heels of the obama administration's decision to terminate production of our own fifth generation air superiority fighter, the f-22 rafter. the decision to end the program was clearly not driven by military requirements as the long-standing requirement developed to meet the national military strategy is 381. while president obama and
secretary gates were spending great capital ensuring the air force by nearly 200 f-22's, it's clear what the russians have been doing. air superiority is not something we should take for granted, madam speaker, for -- the president's short-sighted decision on the f-22's ignores the possibility at some point in the future we can find ourselves in conflict with a conventional military power that can power -- the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman's time has expired. mr. gingrey: air superiority, a possibility i don't think any of us would like to imagine. and i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: for what purpose does the gentleman from texas rise? >> to address the house for one minute and revise and extend my remarks. the speaker pro tempore: without objection. >> madam speaker, members of households think the best way to deal with illegal immigration is to enforce the law.
when asked to deal with enforcement or a pathway to citizenship, 58% of union households and others chose enforce rules. when asked to idress our job needs and if there are enough americans to fill them, 61% of executives, 65% of business owners and 72% of union households said there are plenty of americans available to fill unskilled jobs. these findings are no surprise. citizens and legal immigrants should not be forced to compete with illegal immigrants for scarce jobs. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back. for what purpose does the gentleman from north carolina rise? >> to address the house. the speaker pro tempore: without objection. >> thank you, madam speaker. today, congress voted to raise the national debt limit to
$14,300,000,000 or $121,000 per american today. the third increase since the democrats took control of congress. this is a burden to small businesses and communities, will hurt our economic growth and prosperity for years to come, will raise interest rates and hurt our ability for our communities to gain jobs. this is irresponsible and yet it's merely a symptom of the problem. the problem is that washington cannot control its spending. we need folks in congress who will look at the budget, line by line, as the president pledged in the last campaign and look at how to root out waste, fraud, and abuse and curb the growth of government and balance our budget. that's what the american people want. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman's time has expired. are there further one-minute
requests? the chair lays before the house the following personal requests. the clerk: leave of absence requested for mr. gutierrez of illinois for today and wednesday, february 3. the speaker pro tempore: without objection, the request is granted. for what purpose does the gentleman from north carolina rise? mr. mchenry: i ask unanimous consent that today following legislative business and any special orders heretofore entered into, the following members may be permitted to address the house, revise and extend their remarks and include extraneous material. mr. poe for five minutes, mr. jones, february 11 for five minutes, mr. mcclintock today for five minute, mr. gingrey today for five minutes, mr. broun today for five minutes. the speaker pro tempore: without objection. for what purpose does the gentleman from wisconsin rise? >> i ask unanimous consent that
today following legislative business and any special orders heretofore entered into, the following members may be permitted to address the house for five minutes, revise and extend their remarks and include therein extraneous material. ms. woolsey of california, five minutes, mr. kagen of wisconsin, five minutes, mr. dede-fazio of oregon, five minutes, ms. kaptur of ohio for five minutes. the speaker pro tempore: without objection. for what purpose does the gentlewoman from texas rise? >> to address the house for one minute. the speaker pro tempore: without objection. ms. jackson lee: many people may not be focused on the work done today and led by the democratic caucus and i think it's important to reinforce what we did today. we protected the american people, we protected our veterans, we protected our seniors with social security and medicare, we protected the most vulnerable, our children. as everyone knows, our children have many times the least opportunity for health care reform except for the work that
we did just a few months ago when we worked to enroll some 11 million more children in the children's health insurance program. at the same time as we move forward we know more and more children are uninsure the pay-go work we did and the work we did addressing the question of this nation's deficit was clearly not a selfish act tasms selfless act and that is to say to our seniors, we'll never forget you, we'll never abandon your medicare and social security. our veterans have offered themselves on behalf of this nation and we'll never, never forget our veterans and our soldiers and we certainly will not forget the most vulnerable in our community who need food stamps and medical care. we did the right thing today and i'm proud to have voted for it. i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: under the speaker's announced policy of january 6, 2009, and under a previoused orer of the house, the following members are recognized for five minutes each. mr. poe of texas.
ms. woolsey of california. for what purpose does the gentleman from wisconsin rise? >> to address the house for five minutes and revise and extend my remarks. the speaker pro tempore: without objection. mr. kagen: madam speaker, everywhere i go in wisconsin, people are saying the same thing -- government must live within its own means. i agree. after all, being fiscally responsible is the wisconsin way. people in wisconsin pay their bills on time and are tired of seeing their money wasted on bailouts for wall street speculators. everyone, and i mean everyone is rightfully act ray -- angry and so am i. we simply don't believe in rewarding failure in wisconsin. that's why i voted against every single bailout that came along. and never forget, never forget how we fell into this mess.
when i was elected in 2006, the people in power in washington, d.c., were pursuing borrow and spend policies, policies that drove our economy into the ditch. without paying for a single dime for them. without paying for a single time, -- dime, the previous administration spent money we didn't have on two wars two wars at the same time. two tax cuts for the rich. and gigantic handouts to big drug companies on wall street and a $1 trillion bailout for their friends on wall street in the big banks and asking our children and grandchildren to pay for it all. enough is enough. we must live within our means. our government must invest in our own people right here at home, not on wall street or overseas. we must rebuild our own economy and grow the jobs we need to work our way back into prosperity. when voting for any
legislation, i only have the best interest of my constituents in wisconsin in mind. the pay as you go rules, enacted today, will be successful as they were in the 1990's. and this is exactly the medicine we need today to begin to turn today's enormous debts into future surpluses. that is why i strongly support the passage of pay as you go rules, just as i have seven times previously in my public service. it's really a simple, responsible thing to do. washington must live within its means and pay its bills on time. just as we do around our own kitchen tables every month across wisconsin. mandatory pay as you go rules are critical to reducing our national debt. over time, these responsible spending rules will contain federal expenditures and balance our budgets. for when government attempts to spend money on one program, it
must either raise revenues or cut spending on another program. it's just that simple. live within our means. i yield back my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back. mr. jones of new york. mr. moran of kansas. mr. defazio of oregon. mr. burton of indiana. ms. kaptur of ohio. mr. gohmert of texas. mr. mcclintock of california. mr. gingrey of georgia. mr. baron of georgia. -- mr. broun of georgia.
the speaker pro tempore: under the speaker's announced policy of january 6, 2009, the gentleman from missouri, mr. akin, is recognized for 60 minutes as the designee of the minority leader. mr. akin: thank you, madam chair. the next hour, we'll be talking about a subject that has caught the attention of americans. it's generally speaking a boring subject, but now it's not become boring anymore. that is the problem with the federal government overspending, the problem with the budgets that have been proposed, the problem of the financial trajectory of our country, and the threat that that trajectory poses. i'd like to step back in time a
little bit, as a republican, to talk about the fact that over a 12-year period, republicans had a deficit spending in a number of years at about $100 billion or maybe a little more. if you put that all together over 12 years, you have over $1 trillion amount of deficit spending. what we're looking at in one year now is over $1 trillion. in other words, the democrats are spending more in one year than we did in 12 years, or you could say that they're spending enough in one month to compensate for every year of the republicans. now the past president was criticized that he overspent he spent too much money. his biggest deficit was in 2008 with the pelosi congress. about $450 billion of excessive spending.
just the number of billion dollars, it's hard for us to recognize how does that relate to something, so let's put it in perspective and take a look at it as a percent of the grosdze domestic product of our country. the $450 billion or $460 billion deficit with the pelosi congress and president bush, that number would be about 3.1% of g.d.p. that's actually fairly average for many different years and different presidents. the 2008 deficit was followed by 2009, of course, and it was again the pelosi congress, but this time the obama administration. after all kinds of criticism of the republicans for spending too much money, the budget was $1.4 trillion of deficit. that is, three times worse than
the worst year of president bush. now we have heard all kinds of complaints that it was the republicans' fault and all these kinds of things, and yet the choice to spend that much deficit was still a choice. a choice made by our president and our current congress under speaker pelosi. $1.4 trillion. now let's connect that, because $1 trillion is an awful lot of money, very hard for us to understand how much does that connect to gross domestic product? it turns out, it was $9 -- it was 9.9% of our gross domestic product was in debt. that's almost 10%, just under. that's the highest level since world war ii. that's an incredible level of deficit spending. now the question in people's minds becomes, i'm not used to thinking in terms of billions and trillions of dollars.
so how do we put this in perspective and what does it mean to just the average citizen on the street? one of the things it means is that we are really pushing the financial solvency of our country. we're getting to the point, we were spending money so rapidly beyond our means, that we are driving ourselves into a condition of bankruptcy, which could cause a massive collapse of our entire economic system. nobody knows exactly when or what could trigger that kind of event. but these are very serious questions, we're going to be discussing those in the next hour and i'm thankful to see congressman wolf, a highly respected congressman from this area, and he is also going to share with us something about the situation with his budget and what it means. madam chair, i yield back the
balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back. under the speaker's announced policy of january 6, 2009, the gentleman from virginia, mr. wolf, is recognized for 54 minutes as the dedsig knee of the minority leader. mr. wolf: madam speaker, p.t. barnhoff, executed for his work against the naught sees said the ultimate test for a society is the kind of world it leaves to our children. this is true today as we struggle to confront our growing national debt. the release of president obama's fy-2009 budget is 12.6% of economic output. i'm convinced that addressing ballooning debt is not only an economic issue but there's a moral component of this issue that goes to the heart of who
we are as americans. yet i wonder if we in congress, america's political leaders, have lost the will to make the tough decisions necessary, decisions that could well require sacrifice. the generation of americans who came of age during the era of detrick bonhoeffer has been called the greatest generation. many have made unimaginable sacrifices including their lives and that of tchare children and children's children. . it will not be easy but that which is worth doing rarely is. should the 111th congress fail to address the financial tsunami approaching our shores, it will be judged by history as a dysfunctional, fundamentally broken institution neglected its responsibilities not only to its
constituents we came here to serve but to future generations of americans. we are on that precipice. it is almost four years since i proposed an independent bipartisan commission to address unsustainable federal spending. the commission would secure america's economy and plate in an authentic and transparent way holding public meetings to hear from the american people. it would put everything on the table, entitlements, all of the spending and tax policies. its recommendation would not be made in a vacuum or over a weekend locked up at andrews air force base. at the time of the introduction until today, it is the only debt reduction commission legislation in play that mandates public engagement on this scale. it would force congress to vote up or down on a legislative
package borne from the commission's work. there would be no avoiding hard choices. when i first introduced the bill in the spring of 2006, i discussed the looming financial crisis facing our country and said that the longer we put off fixing the problem, the more bitter the mid sin required to fix it would be. i some have said the problem was too big to fix, too risky, particularly in an election year and and difficult occasion of congressional responsibility. there may be some merits to some of those objections, but the arguments ring hollow. they paralyze the congress from moving forward. they allow the congress to blindly continue to spend. they provide an excuse for the status quo. they allow us to stick our heads in the sand. consider that from 2011-2020,
the congressional budget office projects cumulative deficits of $6 trillion. our nation is broke. the national debt is now over $12 trillion and growing at rates that haven't been matched since world war ii. the house earlier today followed the senate action to increase the federal debt limit to a staggering $14.294 trillion. these deficits are not first and foremost wartime deficits. we have amassed unfunded obligations to ensure future entitlement benefits that when added to liabilities total nearly $57 trillion. every man, woman and child owes $184,000. legitimate credit rating agencies have threatened in recent weeks to downgrade the united states from its current a.a.a. bond ratings. the latest warning came this week from moody's reacting to
the president's budget. moody issued a report saying, quote, unless further measures are taken to reduce the budget deficit further or the economy rebounds more vigorously, the federal financial picture presented in president obama's february 1 budget will put pressure on a.a.a. government bond ratings. this comes on the heal of the news from spain, dubai and greece seeing their credit rating reduced. it will make it difficult to borrow money and lead to a situation where the dollar is no longer the primary international reserve curnssi. if that were to happen, prices including oil, would go up. the "washington post" featured a piece by alan sloan, senior editor at large who focused on a report from the congressional budget office that showed for
the first time in 25 years social security has taken less in taxes than it is spending in benefits. he writes, and i quote, instead of helping to finance the rest of the government, our nation's biggest social programs need help from the treasury to keep benefit checks from bouncing, in other words a taxpayer bailout. he concludes, this year's cash wind fall shortfall is a watershed event. until this year, social security was a problem for the future, now is a problem for the present. social security and medicare are amassing huge deficits and are ill prepared for the coming flood of new baby boom retirees. when our retirement programs were established, the ratio to workers supporting each retiree was 10 times the number supporting retirees today. the american people understand the country's spending problems.
and acknowledge the need to deal with this issue. a national survey taken in november revealed that 70% of those polled said a bipartisan commission is the best way to tackle the growing budget deficits and national debt. 70% is a pretty convincing number. every member of congress knows how serious the federal government spending is, but where are those willing to deal with it? the song "the boxer," man hears what he wants to hear and disregards the rest. that describes the mood on capitol hill when it comes to addressing federal spending. every day that passes where entitlement spending continues to diminish vital discretionary dollars, where will the money to meet the needs of the american people come from if these dollars continue to shrink because mandatory spending has taken a growing piece of that pie. we do not be begin to rein in
spending, every penny will go to interest on the debt and entitlement spending by 2028. the implications are standing. the "new york times" ran an article the day after the president's budget was submitted to congress which captured this approaching reality and said unless miraculous political compromises create some unforeseen change in the next decade, there is no room for domestic initiatives. what does that mean in real terms? do you care about national defense and homeland security and post-9/11 world, there will not be any money left. do you care about improving our nation's crumbling infrastructure? there won't be any money left. do you care about returning a man to the moon? there will not be any money left. do you care about this country leading the way in scientific innovation and technological
advancement? there will not be any money left. do you care about finding a cure for cancer, alzheimer's lyme disease? there won't be any money left. do you care about taking care of orphans, widow, h.i.v. patients? there won't be money left. do you care about natural disasters? there won't be any money left. zero. every penny will go to pay the interest on the debt. the size of the national debt is astounding but the narrative that will accompany these numbers will be even more devastating. its implications are not just economic, but threatening our homeland security. it was written, the federal budget deficit has grown from
newsance to headache to pressing national concerns. now, however, it has come large and persistent and time to think of it as a national security threat. foreign lenders already own 40% of our domestic economy. our biggest bankers are china and japan and oil-exploiting countries like saudi arabia. saudi arabia was the home to the 9/11 terrorists. saudi arabia brand of islam is fought in some of the radical mosques and madrasas, including the pakistan-afghan border. saudi arabia continues to have floggings and be delee headings. they persecute women. the textbooks are filled with hateful messages. is this a country that we want to be be holden to? what about communist china that
violates basic human rights and religious freedom, where catholic bishops and pastors and monks are jailed for practicing their faith. i have seen how they have plundered with my own eyes. china's attempts to penetrate usaid are the most aggressive of all foreign intelligence organizations. according to the report, it poses a significant threat both to the national security and come proposal migse of u.s. critical assets. weapons that china supplied to iran were found to have been transferred to iraq and afghanistan. china is a major arms supplier and source of economic strength to the regime in sudan. they have been the major obstacle to ending the genocide in darfur. our efforts to exert diplomatic pressure against iran's nuclear
weapons program have been thwarted by china, opposition to u.n. security council sanctions. do we really want china to be our banker? these foreign countries with vastly different aims than our own could negatively influence u.s. foreign policy by dumping our currency in the world market. this would not be historical. recall 1956 and the suez canal crisis when it signaled the end of britain and france's world powers. each announced they were going to nationalize the canal and devised a plan to use military force to keep control. u.s. wanted to avert war and president eisenhower threatened to sell the british reserves which would result in the collapse of the british currency. the british changed course. is it conceivable?
is it conceivable to for china to dump our currency? simply put, we are presently borrowing hundreds of billions of dollars from countries whose aims that are at odds with our national interests and values both directly and indirectly. how did america reach this unsustainable spending level? there is plenty of blame to go around, from lack of action from both political parties. it has been an equal opportunity spending society. i tried to get the bush administration on board from july 2006 to april eight. i wrote treasury secretary paulson imploring him to embrace the bipartisan process. president-elect obama took the oath of office, i asked him. congressman jim cooper and i were advocating the best way forward. last week, after years of
effort, the commission finally got its debate on the senate floor and we are close to creating this bipartisan panel legislatively. the senate considered a measure put forward by senators conrad and greg and companion legislation. during the debate, senator conrad pointed to a "newsweek" cover story "how great powers fall" deep debt, slow growth and america could be next. he quoted from the article. this is how empires decline. it begins with a debt explosion. ends with reduction in the resources available to the army, the navy, the air force. the united states doesn't come up with soon with a credible plan to restore and ballance, the danger is real that debt crisis could lead to weakening of american power.
senator gregg in his floor speech described in stark terms, he said, we are on an intolerable path, a path of unsustainability, a path that leads us down the road with a lower standard of living than what we received from our parents. similar remarks, underscoring the crisis we face, the "new york times" reports about this same issue and cites historical precedent. "the times" reported that the united states could suffer the same disease it that has afflicted japan. the country's influence around the world erodes. . charles krauthammer also described the deline. he said, for america today, decline is not a condition,
decline is a choice. to get -- america is in the position of deciding whether to advocate or retain its dominance, decline or continued ascend ancy is in our hands. -- ascendancy is in our hands. last year, rae port was published about the challenge to the american people. it paints a strark and troubling picture of the nation's challenge. one recommendation was to create a bipartisan commission to deal with the looming financial crisis. the study panel's co-chairman, norm augustine, former c.e.o. of lockheed martin, voiced a similar warning he said in a technology driven economy in which we live, americans have come to accept leadership as the natural and enduring state of affairs but leadership is highly perishable.
it must be constantly reearned. in the 16th century, citizens of spain thought they would remain the world leader. in the 17th century, it was france. in the 19th century grearkt britain. in the 20th century, it was the united states. unless we do something dramatically different in our research and investments in education, the 21st century will belong to china and india. george wills' column in "the washington post" echos the theme of china's ascent. we sites a nobel prize winning economist who predicts china's g.d.p. will be three times the entire world economic output of 2000. china's share will almost triple that of the united states, 14%. despite these alarm bells, the senate failed to approve the amendment. the vote was close. a majority was onboard but the
final tally came up seven votes short. i salute senators conrad and greg and the other 44 senators to vote nerd commission for the profiles in courage they showed. in the aftermath of that defeat, the president at the 11th hour had enforced conrad-gregg proposed in a state of the union address the creation of a fiscal commission by executive order. his budget document reflected that proposal but only in broad terms without any formal language or timeline. when i first heard he was considering such a plan, i came to the house floor to voice my skepticism about an executive commission without congressional approval. those concerns are undiminished as more details emerge. one of the most authentic pr provisions of the commission is to mandate for an up or down vote in congress the establishment of fiscal commission by executive order does that does not require congress to vote is what they
call big hat no cattle. a big hat used for political cover for elected officials unwilling to make tough choices in an election year. simply put, an executive order will make it look like washington is doing something to address runaway spending but with no teeth. it will be only a report collecting dust on the bookshelf. a real commission must be transparent, accountable and must involve the american people. must require legislative action. a commission through executive order fails on all those counts. it will be viewed by the american people as cover for the billions of dollars added to the deficit and recent spending legislation such as the $787 billion in economic stimulus that has failed to move the unemployment rate below 10%. or the nearly $1 trillion in health care reform being negotiated behind closed doors or other huge budget breakers widely unpopular in the eyes of
the american people. and if by some miracle congress were forced to vote on the recommendations of such a fiscal commission, it would be after november with a lame duck congress filled with members who are retiring and may have already secured new jobs as lobbyists with who are defeated. where would the accountability to the constituents be that they represent? just this week nerblingt submitted a budget that includes unprecedented spend and borrowing $8.5 trillion in deficit, $3.8 trillion in government spending this year alone and $100 billion proposed for another dubious stimulus package and all submitted with a claim that the administration's fiscal commission will put the country on the fiscally sustainable path. where is the credibility? there's been such analysis by senator-elect scott brown's upset victory in massachusetts. for the record, scott brown,
too, has voiced his support for the bipartisan commission and said if he had been seated before the vote on conrad gregg -- on conrad-gregg he would have vote nerd amendment. one thing pundits and politicians in washington ought to take away from this election is the american people lack trust in their elected officials and have grown weir throif status quo. the american people want their voices to be heard. the american people are deeply concerned about record spending. the american people expect more from their elected leaders. we have to prove to them we are listening. i am among those who believe the republicans can and will regain a majority in the house and when we do, i'm hopeful we'll have the courage to prove to the american people that we are listening. we must take the action necessary to address runaway spending, something we failed to emphasize in recent years. to members of my own party who proposed to bide their time in the hope that we are successful in november, i respectfully submit, we cannot wait to deal
with this growing threat to our economy and standard of living. in fact, i've been deeply disappointed that many within my party find common cause. the americans were tax reform and "the wall street journal" among them have been some of the most vocal opposition to the commission idea, stating their fear that it would ultimately prove to be a vehicle for tax increases. they found themselves keeping company with moveon.org, the service employees union, and the afl-cio and n.o.w., all who come out opposed to the legislation. those organizations' reason is entirely opposite with the fear that the commission will without their -- will cut their spending programs. moveon.org was maliciously launched perbling attacks on general petraeus. remember the ads? and the service employees union
who had the most frequent visits to president obama's white house in the first month of his presidency and turned out 100,000 volunteers to fuel his company. and the afl-cio is pushing organized labor's ageneral darks a legislation that will strip workers of the right to a secret ballot election when it comes to union representation. the conrad-gregg measure, senator voinovich aptly described the political landscape. he said since the possible passage this commission has become a reality. special interest groups on both sides of the aisle are terrible. the taxpayer organization warn the commission wants to increase taxes. the liberal groups warn it will result in cuts to social security and medicare and other government programs. if the left and right are so unhappy, senator voinovich said, this has to be good legislation. i want to be absolutely clear, i am a fiscal conservative. i work with senior staff at the
heritage foundation a bastion of conservatism, among others in drafting the legislation. i believe the economy grows when people keep more of their hard-earned money and my voting record reflects this belief. i do not favor tax increases. in fact, i will support a short-term moratorium on social security payroll taxes as the ultimate economic stimulus to put more taxpayers' hard-earned money boo share -- into their hand so they can invest in the economy this will cost less than a so-called stimulus and will create jobs. as sometimes happens around, the positions are staked out before the bill text is read so i encourage my colleagues, especially on my side of the aisle to read the commission bill. it's a bipartisan process. the legislative process proects -- protects the minority by requiring a supermajority
before any legislation is send to congress for an up or down vote. i do not believe minority members are likely to be appointed to this type of the commission by republican leadership. paul ryan, dave camp, ranking member of the ways and means committee they would not waver in their opposition to tax increases. to say this would bring about tax increases, it is wrong. senator gregg underscores this point during consideration of the conrad-gregg amendment. senator gregg said, quote, one presumes who whoever goes on this task force is chosen by the lead orse they have party in the senate, whether senator reid or senator connell, ms. belohse or mr. boehner is going to reflect the viewpoints and flossnoifs different parties. it will be a bipartisan report or won't be a report at all. then it comes to congress and has to be voted up or down by a supermajority.
once again, it moots the ability to game it. one side can't game the other, the proposal must be bipartisan and fair. end of quote. and any attempt to raise taxes would never see the light of day on the house floor. the bill is carefully crafted to ensure a bipartisan process to the to the protect the right theefs minority party. given the enority of the challenge, the commission needs to be able to look at every component of our fiscal policy to fairly assess where we stand and how we can best move forward on a sound financial future. the language is clear nirk changes in the tax code must help simplify the system and increase economic growth and tax revenue. what no one is saying is by opposing the commission -- opposing the commission concept altogether and failing to put forward a viable alternative, those who most adamantly oppose
tax increases essentially ensure it will happen down the road. the issue is that if we don't do something now about the deficit, the debts that continue to mount at record levels will guarantee tax increases in the future. the longer it takes to address this issue, the more draconian the actions will be when congress is forced to change course. i re350e9edly challenged colleagues -- repeatedly challenged cloges -- colleagues on both sides of the aisle to come up with another solution to the debt crisis that can pass congress. without a special process like the safe commission based on the federal base closing process, i'm convinced congress will never put a mechanism in place to control government spending. quite frankly, both parties have failed to face up to the entitlement challenges of recent years, given the enormity of the country's financial turmoil, i remain
convinced the bold steps needed to control spending will never be taken through order in congress that is controlled by special interests. our entire political system is now so polarized that many only think in terms of red or blue ideology at the expense of shared national interest. time is growing short. if the lawmakers are serious about the debt and the deficit issue that americans are increasingly worried about, congress will halt the budget gimmicks, slick talking points and muster the political will for an honest conversation with the american people and what changes need to be made to get back on track. that's what the process is all about. a national conversation. the people in this country deserve an honest assessment about their federal government's future savings account, a discussion driven not by politics. the american people deserve a discussion which elevates the nation's sights. the consequences of inaction are too great to put this is on
hold. we need a process that will produce measurable results and foster a renaissance in the country to allow us to honestly tell our children that the foundation of america that they're inheriting is just as strong, just as promising as the america that our parents left us. i long to tell my five children and 15 grandchildren that that's the case. abraham lincoln, one of our nation's most admired and greatest presidents, once said, you cannot escape the responsibility tomorrow by evading it today. yet that's what congress is poised to do if it fails to act. in closing, madam speaker, nearly four years ago, i visited the site of george washington's crossing the delaware river in anticipation of the battle of trenton. the iconic scene is depicted in a paint chg hangs in the west wing of the white house. washington had only 3,000 soldiers and he headed for defeat. yet with great courage and sacrifice washington and his
forces were successful in changing the direction of the american revolution and therefore the course of history. their legacy is a rich one and it is ours. if we are mindful of this legacy and the sacrifices so many previous generations of americans, i believe we will take action. i believe we will rise in our midst profiles in courage. i believe we'll make the sacrifices necessary for the betterment of this country. i close with the words of washington himself, the cautionary words from his 1796 farewell address he said we should avoid ungenerously throwing upon posterity the burden of which we ourselves owlingt to wear. -- ought to bear. this is our burden to bear. i ask my colleagues, will they falter under its weight or rise above it as befitting this great nation? . . the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time.
videos for use in your classroom. you can find video clips çó orginized by subjects and topic, all free. sign up at c-span.org. >> now the president address in washington, president obama and hillary clinton, established in 1953, known as the fellowship foundation. >> welcome mr. president, mrs. obama, we are so pleased to have you here. i notice there are representatives from the house and speaker pelosi and the cabinet, if they could stand so
we can acknowledge you. thank you. [applause] >> mr. president, you should know that johnny being from georgia is really adjusting to the fact that this breakfast had quiche instead of grits, i don't know how he will explain that, he's been a great pal as a co-chair for the senate, and he supported the vikings over the saints. that was a tough game, my fourth quarter prayers made no difference, xdbut not even god can overrule a ref call. >> i am not sure, but the ref may be brett favre's
interception. we are honored to be here today, and amy thinks that getting me to pull for the vikings was the ultimate reconciliation. not true, that's when i was invited to the florida gators that beat us four consecutive years. tim, this is a pleasure. >> this is a great occasion and turn back to our leader, amy. >> each week we get together for a weekly senate prayer breakfast. i come away from it as a better person. a senator speaks about their faith or about a personal struggle, or sometimes about the challenges of forgiveness after a tough fight. our prayer breakfasts are real and refreshingly honest. and just when i am about to give up on working with
colleagues, it reminds me that we share a common purpose and common humanity and with faith and forgiveness, we can start anew. it's my honor to introduce sergeant mary kay, who first sang with the band in 1980 at the age of 12. she continued through the years as a guest vocalist until she joined the army in 1996. she's performed throughout the world, from yankee stadium to carnegie hall. this morning she will be singing "god bless america" composed by mr. irving wynn.
>> good morning, mr. president, mrs. obama, honored guests. it's my privilege to offer a reading from the second book of the torah, the book of exodus. exodus deals with the formation of the jewish people, into a nation as they make their way from slavery to the promised land. there are very important lessons in the passage where moses' father-in-law, a medianite priest guides moses on the correct way of the people.
jethro, moses' father-in-law heard of how the lord had brought israel out from egypt. then later in the passage, next day moses sat his magistrate among the people while the people stood about moses from morning until evening. but when moses' father-in-law so how much he had do with are people, he said what is this thing you are doing for the people? why do you act alone while all the people stand about you from morning until evening? moses replied to his father-in-law, it is because the people come to me to inquire of god. when they have a dispute it comes before me and i decide
between one person and another. and i make known the wlaw and the teachings of god. but moses' father-in-law said to him, the thing you are doing is not right. you will surely wear yourself out and these people as well. for the task is too heavy for you. you cannot do it alone. now listen to me. i will give you council. and god be with you. you represent the people before god, you bring the disputed before god. and enjoying before them the laws and the teachings and make it known to them the way they are to go and the practices they are çto follow. you shall also seek out from among all the people capable .]y men who fear god, trustworthy men who spur ill-gotten gain.
set these over them as chiefs of thousands, hundreds, fifty's and ten's and let them judge the people at all times. the dispute to you, but !m+ñthem decide every minor dispute for themselves. make it easyier for yourself by letting them share the burden with you. if you do this and god commands you, you will be able to bear up and all these people too will go home unweary. now moses heeded has father-in-law and did just as he said. moses chose capable men out of all israel and appointed them heads over all people, chiefs of thousands, hundreds,